Starting a business involves planning, making key financial decisions and completing a series of legal activities. These 10 easy steps can help you plan, prepare and manage your business.
Step 1: Write a Business Plan
A business plan is an essential road-map for business success. This living document generally projects 3-5 years ahead and outlines the route a company intends to take to grow revenues. While there are various templates that can help you get started online, the best outcome would result from you personalizing your business plan to your needs. Read as many case studies online to get a better understanding of the challenges entrepreneurs face while coming up with a business plan
Step 2: Get Business Assistance and Training
You will find that learning and growth is something that that you will need to embrace throughout the life of your business. An important step in starting your business is to get as much training as you can get from local forums, government as well as formal education about starting and running a business.
Step 3: Choose a Business Location
Your probably thinking that modern day businesses are working virtually. Well, you are right but every serious business needs a location where they can physically serve their customers. Selecting a customer-friendly location should be your priority. In Kenya, especially in Nairobi, the choice for location has been made easier by Co-Working spaces that not only ease your hassle but offer a range of support services that will get you started in the shortest time possible. You can even rent boardroom space at an hourly rate, can you believe that?
Step 4: Finance Your Business
Government backed loans, venture capital and research grants can help get you started.
Step 5: Determine the Legal Structure of Your Business
Depending on the type of business you are operating: sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, nonprofit or cooperative, it is important to know the legal structure that can influence the way you do business in Kenya.
Step 6: Register a Business Name
Register your business name with the government. Depending on the type of business you choose to operate: sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, nonprofit or cooperative, you will need to register it under the laws of Kenya
Step 7: Register for Taxes
The Kenya Revenue Authority will have a few instructions for you on which taxes to pay and how to pay them once you choose to do business in Kenya
Step 8: Obtain Business Licenses and Permits
You business will be requires to have the necessary licences and permits which are issued county and municipal councils to regulate how business is conducted in their jurisdiction.
Step 9: Understand Employer Responsibilities
Now that you are an employer, learn the legal steps you need to take to hire employees lest you get into trouble. Some responsibilities govern how you treat, remunerate and even house you employees. Be in the know!
Step 10: Associate your Business with the Industry
Now that your business is operational, taking the next steps for sales and marketing geared towards growth should be top of your agenda. Depending on the sector or industry of business, you can join institutions that lobby on your behalf. Private sector aligned businesses might want to consider KEPSA and other organizations that can help you network and grow the reach of your business.
Tax compliance has become one of the major requirement for businesses to trade in Kenya. To subscribe to tenders and business opportunities, business and their directors need to be tax complaint.
A Tax Compliance Certificate shall be issued to taxpayers who are compliant with the tax obligations as per the tax laws. These obligations are:-
Filing of tax returns for the registered tax obligations
Payment of the assessed taxes
Declaring the correct income.
Before checking for your tax compliance, you must apply for it through the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA). Once you apply, a number will be assigned to you that you can use to check the status of your tax compliance.
To verify or check tax compliance, KRA provides a tool called the Tax Compliance Certificate Checker which allows you to confirm the validity of a Tax Compliance Certificate (TCC).
The tool can be used even by third parties to confirm the tax compliance of a business or individual.